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San Francisco, CA, USA

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San Francisco 10, Puc 4, Weiner 2, The City 2, Chiu 1, Scott Wiener 1, Jonathan 1, Sf Puc 1, Us 1, Jane Kim 1,
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  SFGTV    [untitled]  

    December 9, 2013
    1:30 - 2:01pm PST  

to the san francisco board of supervisors i'm scott wiener to my right is supervisor kim and we'll be joined shortly by supervisor chiu. i want to thank sfgovtv for broadcasting today jonathan and supervisor yee i didn't. madam clerk, are there any announcements? >> please silence all electronic devices. and items acted upon today will be on the next before meeting. >> please call item one. >> it's a reliability of the street light plan. >> okay. thank you and i called for this
hearing today on the state of san francisco's street lights and strategies going forward. street lights are a critical part of our industries utility and public safety infrastructure. our street light system helps, of course, light up our roads and sidewalks and plays an important role from our cities quality of life. role in public safety of our neighborhoods because of well lighted street is safer than a dark street. and also allows for more vibrate night life for people out on the street whether it's with their neighbors or in a commercial area. our street lights in san francisco have been challenging. to put it mildlyly. we have too many street lights
that are are burnt-out or otherwise see 0 unlikely the infrastructure is old and it at times is taking two along to fix the street lights that burn out in addition, we our street lights in san francisco are very car and street focused and not pedestrian focused so we see frequently street lights that are very tall and designed to 0 light the roadway for cars but don't light the sidewalks for pedestrian given how their positions and given they can he'll be blocked excuse me. by trees and so forth. and it's really a system i think was designed and put in place during a period of time our
country was focused on cars and forget the fact that we have many pedestrians and people who use our sidewalks and need having to have those situations lighted you are about to give about a year and a half ago i called for a hearing we heard from the public works commission and from pg&e which are the two folks who operate more or less half-and-half the street lights in san francisco. we heard about the time it took to get lights going again once they burn out and in particular pg&e had some challenges around response time and was working on those challenges we talked about that quite a bit at the last hearing. we talked to the puc to talk
about strategies to get that agencies on converting our street light system. both agencies updated on their effort to improve their reliability of the system including pg&e talked about some of the improvements it maikd made in terms of the days it would take to respond to 3wr7b9d out lights. at the conclusion of that hearing both agency made some commitments about improvements they would implement in the coming months and so today wee i reknown this hearing to hear from both agencies to hear what has changed with respect to some if the discussion items.
i'm particularly interested in the amount of time or the frequently the amount of time it takes on average to remainder those lights and the progress we've made towards transitioning our street light to a more friendly pedestrian. i'm looking forward to the discussion following the hearing it's my intent to craft whether a resolution or perhaps an ordinance to set 80 some clearer or consistent standards for our street light system in san francisco. i'll recognize supervisor jane kim >> thank you for calling this hearing. it continues to be a hot topic of something our office hears a lot if from our district residents the brightness of our
lights around public safety but to help pedestrians feel safe walking through the neighborhood. when we had portions of the mission neighborhood as well as its a large issue. what's been frustrating once we respond to those calls it is often taking long periods of time often months to get an answer from public works and pg&e who has ownership over the lighted and getting the lights to go brighter. i realize there are probably a simple issue like budget issues but it's helpful for folks to have a clear pathway to understand who has ownership over our lights and how we can do a better job and who we're lobbying to get better lights
throughout the neighborhood. it's an issue we have blocks dark in the south of market and mission as well. we're working to get lights in the tenderloin with the puc we have the least amount of lights there and most homeowners don't own cars we want 80 a better process to continue that and, of course, the brightness. the alley i have got the new lights and it makes a difference in feeling safer so thank you for working on that. i know this was part of pe w but learning more about that process is helpful >> thank you and i'm glad you brought up the coronation issue we've been tracking that and it
appears there has been strides made with puc and pg&e and 311 your right it's a significant frustration when people sometimes there is confusion about who has what street lights we think it's pg&e but itself that concludes my presentation. with that said we'll go to the presentation we'll hear from puc and pen pg&e and open this up for public comment. first, i want to invite barking from the public utilities commission >> welcome back. >> thank you barbara assistant general manager at the sf puc. i'm happy to present and go through a brief overview of street lights here in san francisco >> talk about our plans for street light improvements given
our maintenance and capital funds. and if sfgovtv could help me i've got an overview. thank you. i'm to talk about those 3 things ownership are the goals important performance and our funding. but before we talk about that lets make sure we understand roles and responsibility. as supervisor weiner mentioned the ownership of street light the in san francisco is mixed. clearly a majority of the lights are owned by the city and the majority of those are owned by the divided puc. we own those assets and have them as part of our management program it's about 25 thousand lights we are responsible for and own >> if i'm not mistaken it's
about 60 percent by the city and 40 percent by pg&e. >> a that's right and there's street lights owned by caltrans but appear to be streets to us but are considered highways. >> how can a resident you see it as light it's outdoor out you want to know who owns it sometimes there's a tag but it's small. >> sometimes they're a tag it can be indicative. if it's a wood pole that the light is on its a pg&e light they own the wood poles and under the circumstances they typically own the street lights . after a other than that, it's difficult to tell. we have a slide that shows how
it breaks down in terms of ownership where the blue town districts show the majority of lights owned by puc and the green toned are the districts and a neighborhood where their owned by pg&e. is there any consideration given to having one entity own all the lights? >> yes. the city over the decades has credited that issue and has discussions, you know, whether ownership should be by the city or pg&e. and we've seen some movement within pg&e territory and our representative can talk about the ownership changes. the assets are old. to have them operate well, they need investments.
in the past when the city considered ownership it's been considered an expensive new obligation to take on so the city has shied away from that. there maybe methods of funding that make sense instead of funding it out loud u out of the pg&e revenue we can talk about that. of course, the ownership question as supervisor jane kim mentioned is frustrating to our resident. we have a 311 system in the city that residents you call into or go to their computers and enter the information that's how we receive information from resident about outages and other problems. the 311 system relies the information to my staff and we
dispatch crews daily to address outages. the same system communicates with pg&e and pg&e has voluntarily participated in that approach. we've recently added to the reporting methods a new application that puc folks developed that allows residents to use new app call street light sf so when you're walking down the street and your noticing a problem you can open up the app and it will automatic low position you and allow you to allow the positioning just by drag and drop of the pen and you can acting report to the 311 system and puc. we have, you know, 311 serving as our hub, if you will, of all
those outage reports to rely on their data collection. quite frankly, i like them being as a third party collaborator of the information to be sure we're responsive with it out needs from our residents. and so what do we do once we find out about an outage we have serve level goals for how quickly we want to respond. you can see on this slide our summer we get lots of different reports you poles that are knocked out or wires exposed. we role a truck to check and make sure the situation is safe.
if it's a simple light brntd burdening burn out we repair those within twaip. we have two staff that everyday go out and perform repairs based on the notifications we've received from the 311 system. they're able typically to repair about 50 street lights a day. so that's pretty good. we're on track to increase the number of lights we repaired this year by 13 hundred over last year's performance so similar we repaired 3 thousand street lights and this year for 43 hundred. i didn't have an increase in crew only on performance i pat the crews on the back but you
see the report of outages within our fraip outages we very much appreciate it when resident and businesses call and notify us of an outage it's the only way we know outside of acknowledging it ourself on the street. f this is a quarter on simple outages this shows the 311 we're side by side with pg&e. we've seen a lot of improvement from the pg&e folks on this area. >> so excuse me. and q one 13 was july 1st of
last year excuse me. >> this year. >> that's 2012 to 2013 fiscal year. >> no calendar year so starting in january 1st of this year. and that's a dramatic drop in first and second quarter pg&e used a 4.7 and puc from that to 6.2 >> i think we're getting our message. i think the he emphasis on pg&e groups has been improving performance and t this data shows staff being responsive. i think that's true of the pg&e improvements that you see here >> that's great. >> one of the more challenging areas are the areas of the street light system where we
have groups. san francisco street light system as you mentioned supervisor weiner is old. and most of the assets we're talking about are beyond they're useful life and for some areas within the city it's a very old technology that's fluid and those are where we see many of the most challenging maintenance issues. parts are obsolete and it's creative work on the part of the street light repair crews to keep those systems operating >> in terms of quote/unquote updating i know in talking to pg&e if one goes out am i to assume they all go out. so quote/unquote does that mean
eliminating the series group so they're not connected >> yes. that's not not only improving them but it's more expensive they're put in the sidewalks. you can see they're related to open this map throughout the city. and what i've shown here on this map is the series of loops owned by pg&e in yellow and red and the series owned by the city in black it comes out sort of okay. on the slide as displayed but pg&e and puc have improvement programs and capital programs for comfortably those parts of the system but as i mentioned it's expensive. so it really depends on our
financial capacity. and for the puc our funding is our own revenues. san francisco's street lights services are funded by puc are regardless of who owns the lights. so it's looks like a large appropriation when you look at the budget >> supervisors overseeing the budget it's leveling .5 million for this fiscal year but it's funding for one budget the van ness bus project so we have little fund for other street light repairs and improvements throughout the city we own 25 thousand lights but only 3 hundred thousand plus a year to spend. >> it's shocking in a bad way.
so loneliness $400,000 a year for repair and improvements to the entire puc stock of 25 street lights >> right for this year that's the amount of funding. >> and has that varied by year. >> it does vary by year after the capital plan passing was pro proved you see 2, 3, 1916 million but the replacement fund are around the 350 to 380 finger. >> i just can you help me clearly i mean to the extent i think we all agree buckets are a reflection of priorities so can you explain the arbitrary all
for not priority tiger's them more. >> the puc went through a process two or three years ago now where the fact that the technically which he water system handing had an out of balance financial plan that causes the general manager to say we're out of balance how are we going to address the fact we're 23i7b8 out of balance. the general manager came to the board and mayor and requested a rate there to help restore and support is the funding necessary to avoid the maintenance. we did receive a partial you know the recommendation for a general fund